Greg Combet, Minister for Defence Personnel, Materiel and Science, today announced that the Defence Materiel Organisation (DMO), BAE Systems Australia and Australian Aerospace have signed a contract to provide a range of enhancements to the AP-3C Orion aircraft and associated ground support systems.
Mr Combet said the contract will provide a range of enhancements on the AP-3C Orion aircraft including improved Electro-Optic/Infra-red systems, Tactical Common Data Links, and upgrades to ground-based support systems.
“The project will be delivered through the P3 Accord, an alliance between Defence, BAE Systems Australia and Australian Aerospace,” Mr Combet said.
“The upgraded system, which will build on earlier interim designs installed to support operations in the Middle East Area of Operations, will enter service in 2011, and will remain operational until the AP-3C is withdrawn from service.
“AP-3C Orion aircraft, which are operated from RAAF Base Edinburgh, play a vital role in Australia’s national and international maritime patrol, reconnaissance and strike capability.
“The contract will also contribute to Australia’s skills base by creating at its peak in 2009, 50 additional civilian jobs, including technicians and engineers,” Mr Combet said.
The value of the contract is A$31.1 million.
Mr Combet made the announcement during a visit to RAAF Base Edinburgh.